School sign

The three amigos and Maid Marian: John, Annette, Tom, and Mike.

Our lives involve a lot of “hurry up and wait.”  Some things you can control.  Some you just cross your fingers, hope for the best, and pray you make it before sundown.

Thursday morning, we were to meet with the the circuit education manager (our go-to guy) and the principals from the eight school we would be serving.  As you can imagine, there’s some logistics to work out.  We managed some introductions and orientation, but the meeting was disrupted by a double memorial.  Perhaps we’ll try tomorrow.

In the afternoon, we traveled to our host school to see the house we would be living in.  The “previous” occupants were still there.  We were all thinking, “No way on Friday.”  Where will we go in the meantime?  And what do we do with our combined 400+ lbs of luggage?

On Friday, we did some shopping and getting to know the nearest town while the principals met with the exams board.  “They’ll be done at noon.”  At noon, we go looking for them.  “They’ll wrap up around 1:00.  There’s no way it can be as late as 2:00.”  Some time around 2:00, they were ready for us.

It was a productive meeting.  We worked out a schedule, and they worked out how they were schlepping the four of us all over the circuit.  A plan!  Our nerves are eased.

But now it’s late in the afternoon.  How do we get home?  What will we find there?  They’ve got our backs.  Don’t worry.  Our host and a neighbor arrange some vehicles, eventually a pickup shows up for our stuff, and we make it home before dark.

The house was miraculously empty, and the students were busy as bees scrubbing it from top to bottom.  The principal and the deputy principal made sure all our needs were met:  beds, borrowed lights, water.  The house is beautiful.  Our hosts worked so hard to make it work for us, and we are truly grateful.

Annette and Kids

I photobomb Tom’s snap of our new neighbors.

Our new home is a little house on the compound of a combined school; we have everything from wee little ones to 12th-graders preparing to take their exams.  It’s very remote and ridiculously gorgeous with rolling, grassy hills punctuated with a few trees.  Think eastern Wyoming or maybe even Vermont.  Lots of cows, a few goats and sheep, and even some horses (Mom!).  It’s hot when it’s sunny, and delightfully chilly when it’s cloudy.

We are happy here.  Everyone around us is doing their best to make us welcome and I hope we can do our best for them in return.

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